Friday, December 15, 2006

Nostalgia Isn't What It Used To Be ... #1

In the summer, me and my Dad went to St. Fagan’s (please don’t make me explain … go to … … thank you.) They have this area where they have rebuilt different types of houses in Wales for each decade of the 20th century. And the last one was a PREFAB. Exactly like the one I grew up in (more on this in a separate entry … when I get around to it). I have very little recollection of my past (therapy, anyone?) but this brought back lots of memories. Even inside it looked just like the home I used to live in. And in the bedroom … on the bed … was a copy of a Rupert The Bear Annual … JUST LIKE I USED TO HAVE!

And that book scared me to death.

It was old and smelt musty (is that the word?). I don’t like the smell of old things. It was also falling apart … and I don’t like things like that either. New or nothing for me.

And as for the stories and the drawings …. OMG! Totally frightening. I used to read it out of some macabre and masochistic pleasure, I think. Like watching horror movies. Or car crashes.

It was horrible. I’m still shuddering now as I write this. (Some things you don’t ever get over.)

But it got me thinking about teddy bears … and how weird and frightening they are. So here are my views on the some of the heroes and villains. (All villains and only one hero, by the way.)

Rupert The Bear (Rupert Bear, technically speaking … for all you geeks out there) was always so po-faced, old-fashioned and fuddy duddy (and probably smelly, too … if his book was anything to go by). And he had such scary people in his stories. And such surreal (drug induced?) adventures. Nowadays he would get an ASBO. And quite right too. “Rupert is really a small boy with a bear's head - although a furry back has been spotted whilst Rupert is having a bath.” Ewwwwwwww!!!!!!!!! And who the hell talks in two-line rhyming couplets? (You can tell I’m really working out some issues here).

Paddington is a bear who usually wears a duffle coat, a rather shapeless hat and, on occasions, Wellington boots. Where are Trinny and Susannah when you need them? Many people also know that his favourite food is marmalade and that he originally comes from Darkest Peru. That’s the best thing about him … I know someone from Peru and they are the coolest people. After the Welsh. But that’s still not enough to make me like him.

Winnie The Pooh. What a doughnut. Just having the name ‘pooh’ is enough for me. If ever a bear needed to sort his life and get some new friends it’s him. “Pooh is a bear who is always hungry and wants food all the time to settle ‘the rumbly in his tummy’” So … a bear with an eating disorder eh? What a great role model for obese children. He needs to shape up and get his sh*t together. Maybe he needs a life coach. Or a brain implant.

And then there’s Superted. OMG … the coolest bear EVER! MY HERO!!!!!

A brief synopsis … “A faulty teddy bear is removed from the factory line and dumped down a chute into a cellar. Almost immediately, Spottyman, from the planet Spot, lands his Spotty Rocket nearby, breaks into the cellar, and uses cosmic dust to bring the teddy to life. They visit Mother Nature on her spaceborne cloud, where she gives the teddy a potion which grants him superpowers. Accordingly, he adopts the name SuperTed.” (taken from Come on people! It’s a story of redemption, purpose and meaning in life … so uplifting in these difficult times.

His aim in life was (and probably still is) to save the universe and put Texas Pete in jail. I’m not from Texas btw … I’m just Pete … Cardiff Pete doesn’t have the same ring to it so let’s not go there. You gotta love a bear with a mission. And he’s got the COOLEST website (and … no… he’s not a cross dresser). But he has got a secret identity. My son used to have a Superted bear that came with an ordinary teddy bear outer fur (nearly said skin but that was a bit yuchy) that you could pull off to reveal … SUPERTED!


And the DVDs ( … just in case … go on … you know you wanna!)


Today I met the animator of the original Superted series on television - Steve John. Take a deep breath ….I know you’re excited.


I bought from him one of the original drawings! It’s a key one which means it is the first in a small series of animations. The first one is drawn by the lead animator (ok … Lead Animator … let’s show some respect) and then the next few are drawn by others (subordinates – pah!). It’s a collectable because when the series finished in the 80s, much of the work was destroyed.

I’m so chuffed.

It’s going to be my son’s Christmas present. But don’t tell him.

He’ll probably flog it on Ebay. Ah well …

WOW!!! thats amazing!!! what a fantastic present!
and no way will he flog it on Ebay...not even Steve...he still has true and very real respect for SuperTed.

also can i just point out that you wrote "yuchy" in a way that only a true Welshman would...just made me chuckle! =P
Well aye, there you are see, innit mun? Come and sit by here and have a cwtch cariad.
tee hee!
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